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Cultivating forgiveness, resilience and positive change: a resilience intervention pilot study among persons with disabilities

International Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Journal
Susan Stuntzner,1 Angela MacDonald,2 Michael Hartley,Sachin Jain4

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Resilience is an area of emerging interest and applies to people living with a disability.1–3However, research suggests that few, if any, resilience interventions have been developed and facilitated among people with disabilities.4–6 To address this void and assist people with disabilities in building resilience-based skills, Stuntzner and Hartley3 developed a 10-module resilience intervention (i.e., Stuntzner and Hartley’s Life Enhancement Intervention: Developing Resiliency Skills Following Disability). The following article is a pilot-study utilizing Stuntzner and Hartley’s3 10-module resilience intervention. The intervention was facilitated among a group (N=11) of individuals with varying disabilities. Stuntzner and Hartley’s3 resilience intervention (SHRI) was used to examine its utility in reducing negative emotions (i.e., depression and anxiety) and increasing forgiveness and resilience. Initial findings indicate that participants experienced significant reductions in depression and anxiety and increases in forgiveness and resilience. The study's strengths and limitations are discussed. Further research is warranted to help professionals understand the intervention’s use and versatility among people with disabilities.


resilience, forgiveness, interventions, positive coping, adjustment to disability, people with disabilities, personal, societal, financial, familial, adaptation, self-compassion, gratitude, meaning-making, personal growth and transcendence, depression and anxiety, -assessment exercises